Charity Softball to Fund Special Olympics Athletes

JACKSONVILLE, NC (WITN) – Law enforcement threw away badges and picked up bats Friday night to raise funds and awareness for people with disabilities

Officers from the Jacksonville Police Department and the Onslow County Sheriff’s Office participated in Friday’s “Battle of the Badges” charity softball game in Jacksonville.

The game is designed to raise funds for the Law Enforcement Torch Run in partnership with Special Olympics to engage law enforcement worldwide in championing the acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities, starting first with their own communities. Over the years, the Torch Run has evolved and now encompasses a variety of innovative fundraising platforms.

Both agencies say this is their first-ever charity softball game for the cause. And both talked about the importance of raising awareness for people with disabilities.

“We’re having a little friendly competition and seeing who can be the best fundraiser in all of North Carolina, but the goal is to raise money, but more so to raise awareness for the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities” , said JPD Sgt. Christopher Padrick.

“To build relationships with people to get the funding to put smiles on their faces for these athletes to go to Japan to go to England to go to where they need to compete and then see that on TV and say you know what we we were part of how they got there, that’s the coolest feeling ever,” said Lt. James Seifert of the sheriff’s office.

The game kicked off at 6:00 p.m. Friday at Field 2 at Onslow Pines Park in Jacksonville. Admission to watch the boys in blue compete was only $10.

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Naomi C. Amerson